Black Oak
Family: Fagaceae (View Members of Fagaceae)

Genus and species: Quercus velutina

Leaves: The leaves are 4-9" (10-23cm) long and 3-9" (7.5-23cm) wide. (View Measured Leaf) Since they fall under the lobed leaves category, they contain 7-9 lobes that are each bristle-tipped at the end. Also, the lobes can be either deep or shallow, but tend to be more shallow than the scarlet oak, and much more shallow than the pin oak. They are shiny green on top and paler beneath with some small hairs. (View Leaves)

Bark: The bark on younger Black Oak trees is gray and smooth, while on more mature trees, it is darker (almost black), and rough with ridges. If the bark is chipped or broken off in an area, it may reveal the bark underneath, which is yellow or orange in color.(View Bark) The buds on the Black Oak are hairy, opposite those of the similar Red Oak, which has no hairs.

Fruit: Since this is an oak, it has acorns as the fruit of the tree. They are 0.5-0.75" (12-19mm) in length and elliptical with a pointed tip at the bottom (opposite the cap). Almost half of the acorn is covered by the cap, which has a hairy, rusty colored border of small scales.(View Fruit)

Tree: The tree can reach 50-80' (15-24m) in height and has a spreading crown of branches. The picture to the left is of a young Black Oak, so the spreading crown is not very obvious.

Range and Habitat: These trees can be found from Ontario to Maine, south to Florida, west to Texas. They are most commonly found in dry and sandy areas.

Black Oak Tree (Brandeis University, Waltham, MA, 10/9/02)
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